Use These 7 Tips to Save Money on Laser Toner
So you may think you’ve saved on printing costs by buying a laser printer, but purchasing the equipment is only half the story. The bulk of the savings comes from actual usage, and with a bit of tinkering with your printer and computer’s settings you can make fewer cartridge replacements and stretch your budget.
- Print on both sides. It’s a great way to reduce not only toner usage, but paper as well nearly in half. This can be done through the duplex printing option available in most business and many consumer printers. Several brands of laser printers now offer duplex printing as its default mode. Anytime you need to revert to printing on a single side just change the driver setting to simplex printing. Be aware though that the automatic duplex equipment will slow down your machine’s printing speed as it has to flip the document over to print on the other side.
- Reduce output resolution. Comparable to “Draft mode” when printing on an inkjet machine, the “Resolution” setting on a laser printer uses fewer toner particles for printing. The result may not be as dark as it is at higher resolutions but if you don’t need presentation-quality documents this is the way to go. It also has the added benefit of increasing your print speed.
- Use “Toner Save”. This is a feature on most laser printers that automatically scale down the amount of toner being used while still maintaining quality prints.
- Reduce print density. Turning down your printer or multifunction machine’s density settings may produce copies that are a little lighter but will still work just fine. Just remember that as the toner cartridge wears out in the long run you’ll need to increase the density to keep your output acceptable.
- Use an eco-friendly font. Well, who knew? A European company called Ecofont created a True Type font that claims you can reduce your toner usage by up to 50 per cent through small holes in the letters without a noticeable change in how it’s viewed. It is a paid download (http://www.ecofont.com), but if it reduces consumption as much as it claims it’s bound to be a good investment in the long run. There’s also a free version you can download. Take advantage and see if it works for you.
- Preview documents before printing. If you’re preparing important documents you’d want to know how they looked like before final printing, understandably. But instead of making several “test pages” and wasting your toner each time go through Print Preview first to make sure no rogue lines appear on a different page than you intended and the elements are arranged exactly the way you want them.
- Shrink pages. Think you can trim down the document a bit more (without compromising readability, of course) to fit on more pages? You don’t have to go through a word processor to make manual edits. Browsers such as Firefox and Internet Explorer have a “Shrink to Fit”, and Microsoft Word has a “Shrink One Page” option in their Print Preview dialogs to automatically reduce the size and spacing of the text.
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